Summary of “Checks” Chekhov

When analyzing the story “The joke”, it is noteworthy that the narrative is conducted in two times. The present moment (emphasized by the use of verbs in the present tense) towards the end of the story becomes a distant past, which the narrator remembers. He is the main character, and the whole plot is built around his relationship with the young lady Nadenka. His feelings for her are not serious, it’s just entertainment, a “joke” – which, however, can hurt.

During the slide, the main character says a declaration of love, and Nadenka can not understand whether she really heard it, or it was the sound of the wind. That for the narrator is a joke, for the girl is almost a flour. “Impatient, sad, penetrating gaze” looks at Nadya, trying to understand, she “awkward, scared.” A joker at the same time quietly smokes, “looking at his glove.” To understand, the shy girl agrees to go down the hill again and again “into

the terrible abyss,” and the hero repeats his joke every time, not solving the riddle.

On emotional tension this work can be considered a novel – five pages unfolds a truly dramatic action. Most of the narrative describes the confessions to which Nadia is accustomed, “as to wine or morphia.” These words, whether said, or not, become the main joy, the meaning of the Native life. Spring comes, the hill is melting, and the mystery remains a mystery, and most importantly, the girl no longer wants to solve it. The narrator finds her in the spring garden, with a “pale, dull face”, “sad, yearning gaze.” And, already knowing that he is unlikely to see Nadenka before leaving for a long time, he again repeats his confession, which the wind brings. And the young naive girl blooms, stretches the wind to her hands, “happy, happy.” This is the culmination of the work:

Here ends the bulk of the novel, and the narrative jumps for many years to come. The touching, trusting lady became a wife and mother, she has three children. Recollection of the confessions

that the wind brought, is still dear to her, this is “the happiest and most beautiful” that Nadenka had. Here the author draws a parallel: both these words about love, and the memory of them, and the very youth and the dawn of life are equally ephemeral, elusive. And the narrator, becoming older, no longer understands “why he spoke those words and joked.” Only youth could give an answer – but she left irrevocably, leaving a vague memory about herself, the same as a declaration of love in a stream of wind.

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Summary of “Checks” Chekhov